Chapter 9: Crazy Flumo Shakes My Hand… and Ankles

A new day did manage to happen, as they always do. Jo Ann and I promised to make it a good one. Her job was to mount a ferocious counter offensive on the bug-a-bugs and cockroaches. Sam was coming early with a broom. My job was to walk the quarter mile to town, buy five […]

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Chapter 7: Armies of the Night

Bob and Gerry Branch, friends from training in San Francisco, generously agreed to host our stay in Monrovia. They lived in a second floor apartment that overlooked a busy Monrovia street. It provided a birds-eye view of life in the city. Monrovia was bursting at the seams with young people escaping from rural areas. The […]

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Chapter 6: Liberia… A Nation Born and Nurtured in Paranoia

Liberia was born and nurtured in paranoia. Its birth took place in the United States during the early 1800’s. The number of free black people was growing rapidly in the North. To Yankees, the population explosion was an issue of assimilation and competition. To Southerners it was a dangerous threat. The existence of free blacks encouraged […]

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Chapter 5: Dr. Livingston, I Presume… Roberts Field Liberia

We made it to the right terminal on the right day and at the right time. In fact, our fear of missing the plane insisted we be four hours early. We watched lots of planes take off and land. Finally, we found ourselves flying over a rough Atlantic. To quote Snoopy, “it was a dark […]

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Chapter 4: Left Behind and Very Alone at JFK

  Now we were disembarking at JFK in New York City, two country kids who had traveled a long way from Diamond Springs and Auburn California. All we had to do was check in at the Pan Am desk, grab a bite to eat, and catch our trans-Atlantic flight to Africa. Ah that life should […]

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Chapter 2: Sargent Shriver Comes to Berkeley in 1965

The day before Cliff sent me scurrying after the errant urinalysis, Sargent Shriver, Peace Corps’ Director, arrived on campus.  I, along with several thousand other students, flocked to hear him speak. John Kennedy recruited his brother-in-law in 1961 to set up and then head the Peace Corps. “If it flops,” Kennedy had said, “it will […]

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Chapter 1: The Peace Corps Is Told I Run a Communist Cell Block

Welcome to my new blog, “Peace Corps Tales from Africa.” Each week I will post a new ‘chapter’ in a book format describing my experiences as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Liberia, West Africa from 1965-1967. Peace Corps recently celebrated its 50th Anniversary. This book travels back in time to the beginnings of the organization.When […]

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